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Mixing it up a bit by pitting two albums that aren't consecutive, but I did that for a reason. The documented hate for Roll The Bones & Test For Echo on this forum would make for a depressing and predictable result. The fact that Roll The Bones has 10 songs also makes it a little more challenging. I will pit it against another 10 song album soon, though. Anyway... Show Don't Tell > Animate Chain Lightning > Stick It Out The Pass > Cut to the Chase War Paint < Nobody's Hero Scars < Between Sun & Moon Presto > Alien Shore Superconductor > The Speed of Love Anagram (For Mongo) < Double Agent Red Tide > Leave That Thing Alone Hand Over Fist ≤ Cold Fire Available Light < Everyday Glory Win for Presto by the closest of margins, 6 - 5. Very close battle at #10. I really like Hand Over Fist, but in the end decided on Cold Fire. As much as I love Alien Shore (it's my 3rd favourite on Counterparts) nothing on either of these albums is beating out Presto (song) which is my favourite song out of all the ones on offer here.
I felt inspired by the Permanent Waves vs. Moving Pictures thread so... Rules are simple. It is a song by song battle based on the track order on each album. You pick your favourite of the two on offer. Distant Early Warning < The Big Money Afterimage < Grand Designs Red Sector A < Manhattan Project The Enemy Within > Marathon The Body Electric ≥ Territories Kid Gloves > Middletown Dreams Red Lenses > Emotion Detector Between The Wheels < Mystic Rhythms WOAH!!! 4 - 4! The difficult battle for me is track #5 which has my favourite song from each of these albums against each other. I went with The Body Electric by a smidgen, but it could easily be Territories. For that reason I feel like Power Windows wins despite it being a tie.
A battle of two of the most under-praised albums in their career. I suspect that the red one will win easily for most people here, considering it is the last album of an era that is still held in fairly high esteem on this board. Skipping albums again because these two line up well in terms of number of tracks and relative popularity (or lack there of) with regulars. Here are my choices: Force Ten < Dreamline Time Stand Still > Bravado Open Secrets < Roll The Bones Second Nature ≥ Face Up Prime Mover > Where's My Thing? (Part IV, "Gangster Of Boats" Trilogy) Lock And Key > The Big Wheel Mission > Heresy Turn The Page > Ghost Of A Chance Tai Shan < Neurotica High Water < You Bet Your Life Very strange 6 - 4 win for Hold Your Fire for me ONLY because of the match-ups. Had Lock And Key & Mission gone up against 7 of the remaining 8 on Roll The Bones they would have lost, but instead they battle against two of the three songs I dislike on Roll The Bones. The closest battle on here is track 4 where Second Nature wins only due to the stellar lyrics. Along with Neurotica these are some of my all time favourite Neil Peart lyrics. The most lopsided battle of all the battles so far is track #5, where my favourite song from all 20 on offer destroys the song I like least out of these choices. Still, overall I do like Roll The Bones as an album better. If we were doing a straight up Top 10 from these 20, Roll The Bones wins 6 - 4.
Time for the gluttons for punishment to get some pain in. Expect the haters to have their knives out and for a shitton "All Counterparts except Driven". Obviously, this is not the case for me. I consider Test For Echo to be significantly better than Counterparts, although it should be interesting to see by how much in a track by track battle. Animate < Test For Echo Stick It Out < Driven Cut To The Chase < Half The World Nobody's Hero ≤ The Color Of Right Between Sun & Moon > Time And Motion Alien Shore ≥ Totem The Speed Of Love < Dog Years Double Agent < Virtuality Leave That Thing Alone < Resist Cold Fire > Limbo Everyday Glory < Carve Away The Stone 8 to 3 win for Test For Echo. This is no real surprise for me. There are very few songs on Test For Echo that I do not like. Interestingly one of the two songs I dislike on Test For Echo won its battle, Dog Years. I am not one to sit here insulting RUSH songs like others, but I have to say that was a real dog of a battle! The close ones were #4 and #6. I love Nobody's Hero & Totem, but both Alien Shore and The Color Of Right are always favourites of mine when they pop up on my playlists. I really identify with the lyrics of The Color Of Right. The song means a lot to me. I also want to praise one of the songs that receives the most hate on this board. Virtuality is one of my favourite songs, not only from this era, but overall by the band. And it isn't just the awesome guitar riff that I love, I really like the lyrics. I know people constantly bitch about the "net boy, net girl, send your message around the world, put your message in a modem and throw it in the cyber sea..." line, but I think it is not only cute, but actually not so dated that it should be criticized. Yes, yes... more messages sent through the internet via cell phone towers today, but the line speaks to the constant changing of the ways we communicate, but that fundamental human contact remains the same. The methods of communication are always evolving even though the messages don't change significantly. I don't hear criticism for 867-5309/Jenny. I don't hear criticisms for the countless songs from the 60s written about writing letters to love interests. The message in the song is actually pretty timeless to me! Anyway... let's get the hate started. I'm sure many of you are salivating at the opportunity to hurl insults at the 16th album by your alleged favourite band.